SAN DIEGO and BOSTON, Oct. 7, 2020 /PRNewswire/ -- Neurocrine Biosciences, Inc. (Nasdaq: NBIX) and Boston-based Me2/Orchestra, the world's only known classical music organization created for people with mental illness and the people that support them, today announced that they have teamed up with the mental health advocacy community to launch Monumental Moments. This new community platform and charitable initiative aims to foster a spirit of togetherness and provide support for people in the mental health community – along with those in the general public – who have experienced a heightened sense of anxiety and stress during this challenging year of social distancing and unrest.
To coincide with Mental Illness Awareness Week (Oct. 4—10) and before World Mental Health Day (Oct. 10), Monumental Moments creates an opportunity for people to share their personal moments of success, big or small, in caring for their mental health during this difficult time by posting on social media using the hashtag #MonumentalMoments. The program's microsite, MonumentalMoments.com, will serve as the platform where people can learn more about the initiative, how they can participate, and be connected to a variety of mental health resources.
"During this time of isolation and tragedy, it's vital that no one feels alone in their mental health struggle. NAMI is proud to be part of the Monumental Moments initiative aimed at providing support through a community platform for people dealing with mental health concerns of varying degrees," said Daniel H. Gillison, Jr., Chief Executive Officer of the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI), the nation's largest grassroots mental health organization. "The platform aims to amplify the positive success stories of lived experience with the hope that others will find solace and encouragement and stay socially connected while remaining physically distant due to the pandemic. We can work together to help create a community where no one feels alone in their struggle."
As part of Monumental Moments, Me2/Orchestra is unveiling an original musical score inspired by the real-life experiences of its members. The score – created in collaboration with award-winning composer Paul Swartzel – brings to life the emotional impact this year has had on many and symbolizes the Monumental Moments movement. The score will debut as a virtual video performance October 28th on MonumentalMoments.com and will feature up to 100 of its members aged 20 to 80 from around the world, 50% of whom are living with a mental illness.
"Music can lift our spirits, bring us together and empower us during the hardest of times," said Ronald Braunstein, Me2/Orchestra founder. "The creation of this score for Monumental Moments enables us to channel our emotions and connect with the broad community of people who are feeling the impact of this extraordinary year. The score emphasizes moments of discovery, determination and joy. We hope that it will inspire people to share how they are dealing with the daily stress and challenges of the past year to achieve their own 'monumental moment' and help people realize that we are all going through this unusual time together."
Recent research from the July KFF Health Tracking Poll, a Kaiser Family Foundation survey tool, has shown that stress and worry related to the pandemic has had a negative impact on mental health, taking an emotional toll on 53% of adults in the U.S. About one third of people surveyed expressed that the stress from the pandemic has negatively impacted their sleep (36%) or appetite (32%).1 For individuals with mental illness, whose conditions often tend to be isolating, the anxiety and increased isolation resulting from these serious times can intensify.2
People living with mental illness may also be impacted by tardive dyskinesia (TD), an involuntary movement disorder associated with prolonged use of antipsychotics, commonly prescribed to treat schizophrenia, bipolar disorder and depression.3 The uncontrollable movements of TD may be disruptive to people's lives due to the symptoms themselves and the impact they have on emotional and social well-being, causing people to feel embarrassed or withdrawn from society.4,5,6
Public posts on social media using the hashtag #MonumentalMoments will help support people living with mental health conditions and the challenges that they may experience. On behalf of posts shared, Neurocrine Biosciences will be making donations to several mental health organizations that are working hard to meet the needs of the communities they serve during these difficult times, including the Depression and Bipolar Support Alliance (DBSA), International Bipolar Foundation, Mental Health America (MHA), National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI), National Council for Behavioral Health, National Organization for Tardive Dyskinesia and the Schizophrenia and Related Disorders Alliance of America (SARDAA).
"We are proud to partner with the Me2/Orchestra and mental health advocates in creating Monumental Moments, a new online platform to build a community that aims to uplift and share how we are coping during these trying times while also supporting people struggling with mental health challenges," said Kevin Gorman, Ph.D., Chief Executive Officer at Neurocrine Biosciences. "This initiative builds on our commitment to support people living with mental health conditions and the challenges that they experience, including tardive dyskinesia. Our hope is to empower people to join the Monumental Moments community and reduce the stigma associated with mental illness."
For more information, visit MonumentalMoments.com and join the conversation online by sharing #MonumentalMoments.
About Tardive Dyskinesia (TD)
Tardive dyskinesia (TD) is a movement disorder that is characterized by uncontrollable, abnormal, and repetitive movements of the face, torso and/or other body parts, which may be disruptive and negatively impact patients. The condition is caused by prolonged use of treatments that block dopamine receptors in the brain, such as antipsychotics commonly prescribed to treat mental illnesses such as schizophrenia, bipolar disorder and depression, and certain anti-nausea medications. In patients with TD, these treatments are thought to result in irregular dopamine signaling in a region of the brain that controls movement. TD is estimated to affect at least 500,000 people in the U.S. The symptoms of TD can be severe and are often persistent and irreversible. For more information, visit talkabouttd.com.
About Neurocrine Biosciences
Neurocrine Biosciences is a neuroscience-focused, biopharmaceutical company with 28 years of experience discovering and developing life-changing treatments for people with serious, challenging and under-addressed neurological, endocrine and psychiatric disorders. The company's diverse portfolio includes FDA-approved treatments for tardive dyskinesia, Parkinson's disease, endometriosis* and uterine fibroids*, with three pivotal and five mid-stage clinical programs in multiple therapeutic areas. Headquartered in San Diego, Neurocrine Biosciences specializes in targeting and interrupting disease-causing mechanisms involving the interconnected pathways of the nervous and endocrine systems. For more information, visit neurocrine.com, and follow the company on LinkedIn. (*in collaboration with AbbVie)
Me2/Orchestra is the world's only known classical music organization created specifically for individuals living with mental illness and the people who support them. Founded in 2011 by Ronald Braunstein and Caroline Whiddon, both of whom struggle with mental health conditions, it serves as a model organization where people with and without mental illnesses work together in an environment where acceptance is an expectation, patience is encouraged, and supporting each other is a priority. Together, they have found music to be a medium that helps inspire people and bring them together. Me2/Orchestra's mission is to erase the stigma surrounding mental illness through inspiring performances and supportive classical music ensembles.
1 L. Hamel, A. Kearney, A. Kirzinger, L. Lopes, C. Munana and M. Brodie. KFF Health Tracking Poll – July 2020. Kaiser Family Foundation, July 27, 2020. https://www.kff.org/coronavirus-covid-19/report/kff-health-tracking-poll-july-2020/. Accessed on September 21, 2020.
2 Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) Coping with Stress. https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/daily-life-coping/managing-stress-anxiety.html. Accessed on September 21, 2020.
3 American Psychiatric Association. Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders. 5th ed. Arlington, VA: American Psychiatric Association; 2013
4 Task Force on Tardive Dyskinesia. Tardive Dyskinesia: A Task Force Report of the American Psychiatric Association. American Psychiatric Association; Washington, DC; 1992.
5 Boumans C, de Mooij K, Koch P, Al. E. Is the Social Acceptability of Psychiatric Patients Decreased by Orofacial Dyskinesia? Schizophr Bull. 1994;20(2):339-344.
6 Citrome L. Clinical management of tardive dyskinesia: Five steps to success. J. Neurol Sci. 2017;383:199-204.
SOURCE Neurocrine Biosciences, Inc.